The distinctive berries ripen in fall (September to October), drawing in cardinals, mockingbirds, and other songbirds by the score. The rare Northern Bobwhite is particularly attracted to the fruit. These sweet berries are suitable for human consumption, too, but only in small amounts. Unfortunately deer find this shrub quite tasty, too, so be sure to grow it in a well-enclosed yard or protect it with other deer repellents. American Beautyberry is good at repelling smaller pests, however?it contains a chemical called 'callicarpenol', which acts a lot like citronella, repelling mosquitoes and other insects, particularly when the leaves are crushed.
While this shrub generally matures at a moderate size of 3 to 5 feet high and wide, in very favorable conditions it can grow as big as 9 feet high. This hardy perennial is a US native whose wild range spans the whole South from Florida to Texas. In these warm zones it will grow vigorous and trouble free! Naturally an understory plant in boggy areas, American Beautyberry thrives in part shade and moist to wet soil. 2 Quart container. Zones 7 to 10.